Helen Jenkins recorded a spectacular victory at the ITU World Triathlon Series event in San Diego. The reigning World Champion broke away on the run to win by an emphatic margin over Australia's Erin Densham.
Jenkins was part of a group of eight swimmers that broke away at the start and maintained a lead onto the bike. The group, which also included Britain’s Vicky Holland and some very strong cyclists, demonstrated that a breakaway group can stay away on the bike by working extremely well with each other.
Holland took up the running out of the second transition, but Jenkins quickly gained the lead at the start of the 10km run and pulled away with Erin Densham of Australia. Densham won the previous round of the Series in Sydney with Jenkins taking second place, but this time Jenkins opened up a huge winning margin.
Jenkins had time to celebrate with the crowd before Densham finished over a minute later and the rest of the field fought hard to impress their respective Olympic selectors in one of the final major races before the Games.
Jenkins said: “We really had to work hard for that, the plan was always to try and get away. I really enjoyed the run course. There were lots of people out there supporting. The British coaches were out there, the support staff and my husband and they all really helped.”
She added: “Everything is going really well. I’ve just got to keep it in perspective, get home and get back into my training and keep focussed on London.”
Holland was upbeat before the start, saying, “make no mistake, I’ll give it everything.” The 26 year old, originally from Gloucester, equalled her best ever performance in the ITU World Triathlon Series with fifth place.
Liz Blatchford was the next highest finishing British athlete in 16th, Non Stanford was 21st, Lois Rosindale 30th, Vanessa Raw 37th and Jodie Stimpson 45th.
Elite women: results – 1,500m swim, 40km bike, 10km run
1. Helen Jenkins GBR 01:58:21
2. Erin Densham AUS 01:59:26
3. Laura Bennett USA 02:00:11
4. Jessica Harrison FRA 02:00:14
5. Vicky Holland GBR 02:00:28
16. Liz Blatchford GBR 02:02:10
21. Non Stanford GBR 02:02:26
30. Lois Rosindale GBR 02:03:36
37. Vanessa Raw GBR 02:04:17
45. Jodie Stimpson GBR 02:05:22
Credit: Rich Cruse/ITU